November 30, 2020
Creating a world-class Information Technology (“IT”) operating model requires gaining an in-depth understanding of the strategic technology needs of an organization, as well as coalescing the human aspect of its operation – the people who employ the technical tools to innovate, optimize processes, and solve operational challenges.
This article appeared online at CIO Review in November 2020. Published with permission from the publication.
By Sophie McAuley, Commercial Outreach and Client Success Lead, Zeevo Group
“As we work to accelerate agility and adaptability in our enterprises, particularly in the face of such significant market shifts as the pandemic-induced work from home trend, IT departments ought to be organized in a way that aligns the broader business objectives with the right degree of technology customization or specialization by department, business area, and/or geography,” explains Sophie McAuley, Commercial Outreach and Client Success Lead, Zeevo Group.
In working with global clients across industries, our technology team at Zeevo Group has identified the following areas as the most challenging to ensuring efficient IT operations, which oftentimes impede the company’s market competitiveness, employee and executive accountability, and cross-functional growth.
- Execution plans for IT strategies are not always fully developed to ensure the vision will be achieved;
- Many new capabilities are still being built and need guidance regarding how extensive they need to be, e.g., configuration management, standards development, project management methodology;
- Inefficient processes remain in key areas such as program and project management and escalation of issues;
- Duplication of efforts and “shadow IT” between and amongst departments and locations;
- Budget targets for reducing costs require clients to work smarter and force moves toward continuous process improvement; and
- Needs for “enterprise architecture” (“EA”) have been articulated and acknowledged, yet many clients have not established what “good” looks like when it comes to EA.
“At Zeevo Group, we recognize that restructuring your IT organization can be quite the undertaking and requires the specialized support to do it the right way, which is frequently not available internally or too cost-prohibitive to hire on a short-term basis,” contends McAuley.
Clients rely upon Zeevo Group to find solutions to their challenges through our battle-tested approach that consists of:
- Gaining an understanding of our clients’ current processes and capabilities;
- Obtaining client management’s agreement on priority of improvement areas;
- Developing a future “capability” vision for areas needing improvement;
- Assessing the gaps in current capabilities when compared to the future vision; and
- Developing and implementing a roadmap for achieving the future vision.
McAuley points out that our team’s experience tells us there are “some things leadership must do right – irrespective of the size and scope of the envisioned changes.” A few of those lessons learned include:
- Define success: What is the end game?
- Document your change agenda and its objectives;
- Have a realistic, time-bound plan; and
- Create a stakeholder map and proactively manage expectations with all impacted individuals and teams.
- Define the value proposition:
- Anticipate what IT brings to the table and why internal customers should care; and
- Get closer to internal customers through surveys and workshops.
- Strive for a culture of high performance:
- Develop and promote attractive career paths; and
- Establish a performance-based compensation model.
- Organize for success:
- Clearly define and document roles and responsibilities; and
- Over-communicate with all who are impacted (see stakeholder map reference, above).
- Improve core delivery capability:
- Establish a solid program/project management framework;
- Measure and manage business process improvements (BPIs); and
- Maintain a structured and disciplined environment and standards.
- Don’t go it alone:
- Get some advice; learn lessons from others; and
- Select strategic partners to augment your team’s capabilities.
“Be it be through consultation, implementation assistance, or employee training, our team’s IT transformation methodology provides a structured and proven approach to guiding an IT organization leadership,” concluded McAuley.
About Sophie McAuley
Sophie McAuley is an Ireland-based client relationship and commercial outreach executive who has dedicated her career to enhancing client organizations’ performance and sustaining competitive advantage through value-added and life-long business partnerships.
McAuley’s focus on creating a meaningful impact on business performance is anchored in her battle-tested methodology to translate client strategy into actionable efforts while ensuring client organizations’ infrastructure is au courant.
McAuleyhas provided comprehensive support to a variety of globally based organizations operating in growth industries, ranging from local government agencies, the private sector to technology and professional advisory companies.
About Zeevo Group LLC:
Zeevo Group LLC (“Zeevo”) provides business, finance and information technology consulting services and products to a broad range of clients representing such key industries as aircraft leasing, technology and consumer products. www.zeevogroup.com
Direct: +1 760 933 8607